November 9, 2011
The State of Nevada's Implementation of the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program
Under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act), the Department of Energy (Department) received $3.2 billion to fund, for the first time, the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program (EECBG Program). The EECBG Program provides grants to U.S. local governments, states, territories and Indian tribes to fund projects that reduce energy use and fossil fuel emissions and improve energy efficiency. The Department awarded the Nevada State Office of Energy (State) approximately $9.6 million to develop and implement the EECBG Program, of which about $8.8 million was awarded to 23 state and local government entities (sub-recipients). The State retained approximately $800,000 for administrative and monitoring costs.
Our review identified monitoring and oversight issues that increase the risk that Recovery Act goals may not be met. Specifically, the report found the State's sub-recipients had not obligated about 24 percent, or $2 million, of the EECBG Program grant funding they were awarded almost a year and a half ago. In addition, the State had not ensured sub-recipients were always in compliance with federal requirements or terms and conditions of sub-grant awards. The report concluded that these conditions occurred because the State had not taken a comprehensive approach to grants management. The Department concurred with the report's recommendations and stated it would work with the State to ensure the recommendations were implemented. The State agreed with two of the recommendations and partially agreed with the remaining recommendation. The State indicated it had already begun implementing the recommendations.